Interface for calibration of connected actuators. On this panel it is possible to set actuator position for each control signal output, allowing to configure the maximum and minimum values and custom performance. The figures shown in this section correspond to a tailless aircraft, whose surfaces layout will be used as an example for control/servo signals configuration.
Actuators Physical Configuration Menu
The parameters of each one of the servos can be configured in two different ways: directly on the menu shown in the previous figure, or through the Wizard. This last option is the recommended one for the first configuration, leaving the other to adjustments and advanced settings.
The options that appear on the screen of the previous figure are presented as follows:
- Servos: this menu contains the servos of the platform. Moving the scrolling bar will change the servo position, but the signal to the system will only be sent if the checkbox next to the servo number (A1, A2…) is marked. The manual movement of the servos can only be done in the “Initial” phase (when there is no phase selected in Veronte Panel).
- Control Signals: this menu contains the variables that represent the control signals generated by the system. Considering this example (a delta wing, tailless aircraft), the controls are pitching, thrusting and rolling, so there are 3 different controls. The mapping from the controls to the servo positions is indicated with the SU matrix, which is set in Setup/Veronte. When moving the scrolling bar of one of the control channels, the corresponding movement on the servos will also be represented.
- Servo Position – PWM: this option is used to set the transformation from a control position to a PWM signal, for example, a 20º degrees deflection (0.349 rad) of the right elevon corresponds to an 81’5 % pulse to be sent to the corresponding servo. The transformation is expressed through the graph, where it can be introduced as many points as desired.
- The other options that appear on the screen are:
- To start up: set initial values.
- To current value: set the current value.
- Change size actuators: change the number of actuators.
- Allow command out of limits: allow manual control over the actuators limits established.
- Wizard: explained below.
- Disable/Enable servos: Menu for enabling servos with their limits or just to disable them.
- Start up servo position: set the pulse value for the Start up.
- Increasing/Decreasing Rate Limit: Set a limit for increasing/decreasing value of the servo.
The procedure to follow when enabling a servo is to put a 50% value in the scrolling bar, then click on Enable (this avoids the problem of enabling a servo when it is in an extreme position, which can produce a malfunction). Set the maximum and minimum values desired (a restrictive approximate value works). Once the servo is enabled, the minimum and maximum values can be changed on Servo PWM display.
Configuration wizard is recommended on first system configuration. It guides the user for configuring actuator limits and performance. This calibration should be performed in order to define the relationship between the autopilot output and real servo position.
In order to set servo positions, it is possible to enable servo movement from the user interface. Check the box on the left of each servo in order to enable servo movement, once enabled, servos will move according to the bar. On the bottom left part of the windows, there is the Stop PWM, with which all checkboxes are disabled.
If the user wants to finish the wizard and keep the results configured up to that point, just click on Finish on the bottom right part.
- Limits: Set maximum and minimum pulse value for the mechanical limits on the actuator.
Trim Wizard – Limits
The autopilot will never command the actuator outside these limits, preventing mechanical damages in the aircraft.
- Neutral: Set neutral position for actuators and control channels. This position is set as a reference in the system and will remain as the default position on system startup. On the right, there is the column for U, where the neutral value for that particular control output is chosen.
Trim Wizard – Neutral
- Select: Select a servo to trim. The servos are sorted depending on which is affected by each control input.
Trim Wizard – Select Output
Once a servo is trimmed for a defined control channel, it will not be displayed for trim in other control channels.
- Value: Enter the maximum and minimum actuator position for the control variable. These values correspond to the components of S, for example, a maximum deflection of 20 degrees will correspond to a 75 % pulse and a minimum of -20 a 25%. These limits don’t have to be the same as the mechanical limits of the actuator establish in the first screen of the wizard.
Trim Wizard – Min/Max Values
When the process is finished, a summary display appears, showing the user the graphs relating all the information provided, as the on the bottom part of the main display.